Donna’s cool, sultry, vibrant and, at times, playful voice has wowed audiences in intimate café gatherings as well as theater and concert venues. Donna has a wholesome presence that is fun, energetic and simply memorable.
Have you always been interested in music?
Yes, since I was 7 years old taking piano lessons. Was there a particular song/performance that made you say “Woah! I want to do that!”? My parents took my brother and sisters and me to see The Wiz on Broadway in the 1970s, and I knew I wanted to be on stage. I still follow Stephanie Mills to this day.
Has your musical journey had a deliberate direction, or did it simply gradually evolve in whatever direction it found?
I’ve always been led to the great American songbook and just plain ole music. I graduated from the New York Academy of Theatrical Arts and later formal studies at Julliard. Performing/Entertaining is me!! If we were to look at the artists you are listening to, who would be on your playlist? Those I previously mentioned, as well as the Beatles, Dinah Washington, Prince, Josh Turner, Whitney Houston and Nancy Wilson and many more.
Where have you performed?
I have been blessed to perform throughout Europe and the United States. Paris, France, London, England, Switzerland, Italy, and Ireland. What are your favorite and least favorite venues? I loved performing at Carnegie Hall in New York City. I do not have a least favorite. Do you have any upcoming shows? February 2024 Atlanta, GA, March Coral Springs, FL and June, Rome, Italy. What are your plans for any future releases? I have an album premiering on my birthday, October 19th called Beauty Along With A Bass. It is a collaboration with Ranses Colon, my bassist. My Christmas single The Marvelous Magical Merry Mrs. Claus, written by the award winning writing team, Roy Singer, composer and Mitchell Uscher, lyricist, drops the day after Thanksgiving 2023.
What is one message you would give to your fans?
Choose Joy!! In a world where people are so quick to anger, I ask that we choose joy!!
How do you feel the Internet has impacted the music business?
I’m very torn between loving the internet and not loving the internet. Artists are paid a fraction of cents for their albums and songs because of streaming services. I hope something changes soon where independent artists get recognition as well as appropriate financial reward for their beloved talent.
What is your favorite song to perform?
I have quite a few but I love Tina Turner’s Proud Mary, Sammy Davis Jr, Without A Song and Dance Band Boogie (Uscher/Singer) along with my 18 piece big band The Diamond Jazz Orchestra.
If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?
The difference in pay for men to women in the jazz/music world.
What are your musical plans for the next 12 months or so?
My recording trio, The Ranses Colon Trio will continue recording in the studio a new Christmas CD and a couple of gospel songs. Do you enjoy recording and production? I will soon have 12 CD’s and 5 singles recorded.I also plan to tour Rome, Italy, Atlanta, Georgia and tour upstate New York the summer of 2024.
What is the most useless talent you have?
I am a very good whistler, tunes and all.
What was the last thing you dressed up for in a fancy dress?
I was the Mistress of Ceremonies for the Black Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches ‘Ascension Awards’ which celebrate achievement.
You are a new addition to a crayon box. What color would you be and why?
But of course my favorite color ‘green’, I would spend hours in my apple orchard and fields and grass and rivers and just be surrounded by mountains while growing up.
Which fictional character do you wish was real?
Yoda, a small green humanoid alien who is powerful with The Force, 1980 The Empire Strikes Back.
What’s your favorite children’s story?
The Chronicles of Narnia, The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.